I am currently going through a divorce and have got my Decree Nisi. My soon to be ex husband left the matrimonial home over 2 years ago, this was a mutual decision.
The house that was the matrimonial home was always in my name. When I first met my husband I already had a 3 bed house in London, and he moved in with me, he had no assets. A year or so after we married I sold the house in London and bought a house in East Sussex, for £415,000. The equity from the previous house went was £250,000, this house is much larger and my mother paid £120,000 toward the cost of the new house as she has her own flat at the top of the house. The house prices have dropped since it was bought. My husband did contribute towards costs when we were together but since we split up I have paid the mortgage and bills on my own.
He is now asking for £60,000, we were married for 6 years and this equates to £10,000 for each year we were married. There are no children from the marriage I think this is too much. Could I have your opinion and where would the law stand on this.
Hopefully one of the experts on here will be able to help but I suspect they will need to know your ages and details of other assets as well as earning potential and mortgage capacity. Also, was your Mother''s contribution paid with a proper contract as a share in the property?
Would your STBX be able to buy himself an adequate home with the £60,000 as a deposit?
You''re right in the zone of uncertainty here. How long were you together? The shorter this was and the younger you are, broadly speaking, the less he''ll get. However, judges seem rarely to send people away from Court empty handed so he''ll get something. Just what that will be is extremely hard to predict in a case like yours and there could be a wide variation between different judges on the subject.
We were married for 6 years in total. We are both in our mid 50''s. To raise the £60k he is asking for I would have to sell the house, as I said property prices in the area have gone down and currently the estimated value is £350-£370k. Therefore if it sells for £370, and I give my mum back her £120, then pay the mortgage back of £110, that leaves £140, then take into account estate agent/conveyancing costs etc. Therefore the sum of £60k that he is requesting after just 6 years of marriage hardly seems fair when I bought my first property at 28 and this is what I''d accumulated myself over the years,apart from the 6 I was married. The fact that my stbx never had the foresight to buy property when he was younger (he had been married before and had 2 sons) hardly seems my fault, as I said before he had no assets when we met.
To further add to it all, there are some repairs that need doing on the house, (its an old Victorian house) and I tried to secure a loan to get repairs done but since divorce proceedings my sbtx has put a charge on the property, therefore I am unable to secure further finances. So in the meantime the house will deteriorate even further and depreciate in value even more. I have put this in an email to my ex but he hasn''t responded. I am receiving letters from his solicitors asking for valuations which I am happy to provide. I am not in a position to instruct a solicitor so I am trying to get my facts straight before I send valuations and try to put my case over.
Being the age I am I would want to reduce my mortgage but if the figures above are anything to go buy after giving him £60k and even if I take another mortgage of £55k I won''t even have enough for a 1 bed flat let alone the 3 bed semi I started with. This just doesn''t seem right to me. As I said I''m not in a financial position to instruct a solicitor and I''m trying to avoid court, (no mention has been made of court as of yet)so I was just wondering really what do you think would be a reasonable sum to offer him. I am able to get financing of £30k to pay him off if he is prepared to take charge off the house but of course no money will be released until he has agreed to this. do you think this is a reasonable amount ?
You need to bear in mind as well though if the value of the property has fallen then the value of your mothers initial investment (£120k) will have fallen too so you wont need to give her all of it back. That may sound awful but your stbx will probably argue it at some stage.
Was the mortgage increased at some stage as if you bought for £415k and paid in £250k from your house plus £120k from your mother initial mortgage would have been £45k to make up the purchase price but approx 5 years later stands at £110k. Is he aware of this as he may be basing his request on thinking there is much more equity in the house than there is?
Not all of the money went into the house, some was held back to do repairs, alterations etc as the house needed a bit of work. It was a reserve mortgage and over the 5 years I have used that reserve to make improvements to the house, 2 bathrooms refitted, flooring etc.So you see all the money has gone into the house.
My mother is 80 and I really don''t see why she should suffer because of any of this. That money was all she had in the world and I am not prepared to let her suffer,she paid into the house thinking she would have me nearby in her old age and thinking she was secure. Now she needs that money to buy herself another place to live. Its one thing living with your mother in a larger house where she has a self contained flat, its another living together in a 2 bed flat. As things stand, I will come out of this worse off than him.
I think you need to bite the bullet and get an opinion from a family law solicitor. Your case is somewhat out of the ordinary and you need to provide full details to someone who can give you an expert opinion.